This review is based on a reviewer copy received from the author but is my own honest opinion.
This book was very difficult to review as the writing is very "unpolished" and seems to be the product of watching too many Die Hard films. Leopold Blake is a consultant working with the New York City Police. He has recently investigated crime scenes from three Senators that were thought to be suicides but from Leopold's poor Sherlock Holmes immitation, he concludes that each was a carefully staged murder. (The author should read one of John Verdon's David Guerny novels to see what a real smart police consultant does).
Leopold is apparently wealthy and has a "bodyguard" named Jerome who goes with him everywhere (a poorly written version of Harlin Colbin's Myron Bolitar). He is asked by Police Sergeant Mary to go to another Senator's house to discuss his daughter's (Christina) kidnapping. Senator Logan has a team of mean security lead by an ex-black ops officer named Stark. After the group leaves Logan's house, Stark has his men follow them.
The team then goes to investigate with Christina's "talkative" friends who tell them way more information than any college student would ever share with police. They then go to the bowels of Columbia University, along the way Sergeant Mary breaks about 50 police rules including just breaking down doors, stealing keys, killing bad guys and not calling for backup, etc.
At this point of the book I just wanted to skip to the end. It is written in a way that the reader's intelligence is constantly insulted. The most baffling thing is that after the last page, there are three preview chapters of a sequel book. How this came about is anyone's guess and I will not be rushing out to get it.
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Leopold Blake, expert criminology consultant for the FBI, had his weekend all planned out - and it didn't involve dealing with a murdered senator, a high-profile kidnapping, and at least half a dozen near-death experiences. Three politicians have been murdered in as many weeks, all expertly dispatched, and only Leopold can get to the bottom of it. Unfortunately, as all hell breaks loose on the streets of New York City, he soon finds himself the next target of a powerful enemy who wants him silenced. Permanently.
Against the backdrop of political corruption and murder, Leopold and his team must fight for their lives to uncover the truth before it's too late. Panic is the first novel in the Leopold Blake series of thrillers, which can be read and enjoyed in any order.
*** Praise for Nick Stephenson ***
"Had me on the edge of my seat the whole time with its fast pace and nonstop action. A real page-turner, it leaps from crisis to crisis and never slows down, twisting all the way to its gripping conclusion." - David VanDyke, author of The Plague Wars series.
"Sherlock Holmes for a new generation" - Robert Crawford, author of American Zen.
"Buckle up... With precise blows, Nick Stephenson creates fight scenes that had me clenching my jaw with tension. The twists and turns kept me guessing - the pace of the ...